Tonto Dikeh. One word, beauty; another word, sexy; another word, controversy; one last word, drama. Two words, iron lady. Tonto Dikeh is stuff for encyclopedia pages. No, we dare not dwell on her many dramas – this is a 1000-word article; her dramas should be for small novels. We would rather bring you five lesser-known facts, about the Rivers-born actress. Some will say, a failed musician, please ignore them. Here are the facts you might not know about her.
1. Tonto Dikeh started smoking at the age of 13
Born on June 9, 1985, TontoWogu Charity Dikeh is a Nigerian actress and ex-singer. A native of Ikwere in Rivers State. She studied Petrochemical Engineering at the University of Port Harcourt. Having lost her mum when she was just three, she was raised by her stepmother. She became a popular figure on the screen after competing in the TV show titled “The Next Movie Star”, and coming second, earning her a role in the movie “Holy Cross” which she starred alongside Veteran actor Pete Edochie and Jim Iyke.
Earlier, at the age of thirteen, when her mates were just climbing the world of sanitary pads, tampons, and other girly stuff, Tonto had already become a tobacco lover. If she was influenced by peer pressure or abused into it, it is hard to tell but Tonto Dikeh took her smoking skills to the university, and then film locations. In 2012, the star announced on Twitter that she had quit smoking, claiming that the prayers of Pastor T.B Joshua of the Synagogue Church of all nations healed her through her TV station Emmanuel TV.
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“I’ve good news for those who wish me well,” she tweeted. “I quit smoking!”
Has Tonto Dikeh smoked since that fateful day? We don’t think so but if they take you before a shrine, don’t swear on it.
2. She has 58 Tattoos
It is no secret that Tonto’s body is marred with tattoos of myriad shapes and letters but you may have underestimated the quantity – they are a legion. 58. As of the last count which was 2015, a long time ago. She had come out to announce adding her 58th tattoo saying she went through excruciating pains to get it because it meant so much to her. The tattoo is an image of a rosary with the writing “Emmanuel”. Sounds like someone wants to tattoo her name on the book of life.
At a close guess, Tonto has crossed the sixty-tattoo mark. Recently she mentioned that she was considering having a tattoo of her son’s face on her body in no distant time. No distance-time might have already past.
3. Tonto Dikeh was once Suicidal
In August 2015, she had a shotgun marriage to one of Olusegun Obasanjo’s erstwhile sons Oludunni Obasanjo Churchill which ended after 17 months with a baby boy she delivered in America. It wasn’t a quiet ending, this marriage. For a long time, Tonto Dikeh and her husband traded accusations. Tonto claimed to have suffered domestic violence and humiliation. On his part, the husband claimed Tonto once threatened him with a knife, that once she becomes violent it is impossible to restrain her.
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This is where the story ends for many people. It didn’t end there for the screen-goddess. After her marriage and the circus match of social media, she was depressed so much that she considered taking her own life more than once. Tonto has since come out of this, posting on Facebook that she was only saved by the power of God and urging people to support depressed people. She was once suicidal, but by the virtue of her post, she might have saved someone’s life. Anyone.
4. She once dressed like a man to play the role of her son’s father
You might call Tonto Dikeh fearless and bold and it won’t be unjustified. After her marriage ended with her husband, she dusted herself clean after crying and started playing the role of both father and mother to her son. Her son’s school organized a Father’s Days event and the beautiful actress dressed as a man in a caftan plus a fake beard to match and turned up at the event. When the pictures came out online, it was met with outrage. If this bothered Tonto, she didn’t show it.
Recently, she berated her husband in a live interview, stating that Churchill the man she once adored, the man she once drooled girls with, doesn’t last long in bed and that once on top of her, he only sustains fire for forty seconds.
No, that’s not all. She also reveals that her ex-husband was into internet scam popularly known as yahoo-yahoo.
5. She has a foundation
Tonto Dikeh is among the ladies who try to give back to society. Outside her marital woes and her unsuccessful stint with music, Tonto has scored points in other fields. She has a foundation that takes care of raped victims, domestically abused women and orphans. The Tonto Dikeh Foundation is at the forefront of giving support to young girls who have been molested or assaulted in any form, restoring hope to such young girls by providing help, from antenatal to their postnatal period, mentoring them so they can fit into the society again with a new sense of hope and a fresh shot at life. With this her foundation, you can say that Tonto is serving humanity.
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In November 2019, news hit the internet that billionaire Otedola donated five billion niara to his daughter, DJ Cuppy’s foundation, Cuppy Foundation and that Aliko Dangote who is DJ Cuppy’s godfather donated 100 million naira to the Foundation. Tonto Dikeh paused to lament. First, she berated her father for not making money when his mates, Dangote and the rest were making money and instead of money got a fine face from God, then she mentioned how she has been running her foundation for eleven years without help, using her own money to support her endeavor. She gave the impression that Cuppy has only one leg and one minute experience in running a foundation.
The time is now; if Tonto Dikeh makes enough money, her son wouldn’t have to lament like this in the future.
Image source: PMNewsNigeria